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Polybius, Histories, book 9, Contrast Between Alexander and the Aetolians (search)
ou Aetolians it is in no circumstance open to do so,— you who have never been the authors of anything good to any one, but of mischief to many and on many occasions! Who was it that called in Antigonus son of Demetrius to the partition of the Achaean league? Who was it that made a sworn treaty with Alexander of Epirus for the enslaving and dismembering of Acarnania? Was it not you? What nation ever sent out military commanders duly accredited of the sort that you have? Men that ventured to do violence to the sanctity of asylum itself! Timaeus violated the sanctuary of Poseidon on Taenarum, and of Artemis at Lusi. Pharylus and Polycritus plundered, the former the sacred enclosure of Here in Argos, the latter that of Poseidon at Mantinea. What again about Lattabus and Nicostratus? Did not they make a treacherous attack on the assembly of the Pan-Boeotians in time of peace, committing outrages worthy of Scythians and Gauls? You will find no such crimes as these committed by the Diadoch
Polybius, Histories, book 11, Philopoemen and Machanidas (search)
as he could point to his own life as an example, they wanted little more to convince them. Thus it happened on several occasions, that the confidence he inspired, and the consciousness of his achievements, enabled him in a few words to overthrow long and, as his opponents thought, skilfully argued speeches. So on this occasion, as soon as the council of the league separated, all returned to their cities deeply impressed both by the words and the man himself, and convinced that no harm could happen to them with him at their head. Immediately afterwards Philopoemen set out on a visitation of the cities, which he performed with great energy and speed. He then summoned a levy of citizens and began forming them into companies and drilling them; and at last, after eight months of this preparation and training, he mustered his forces at Mantinea, prepared to fight the tyrant Machanidas in behalf of the freedom of all the Peloponnesians. War against Machanidas, tyrant of Sparta. B. C. 208-207.
Polybius, Histories, book 11, Arrangement of Forces at Mantinea (search)
Arrangement of Forces at Mantinea Machanidas had now acquired great confidence, and Battle of Mantinea, B. C. 207. looked upon the determination of the Achaeans as eMantinea, B. C. 207. looked upon the determination of the Achaeans as extremely favourable to his plans. As soon as he heard of their being in force at Mantinea, he duly harangued his Lacedaemonians at Tegea, and the very next morning atMantinea, he duly harangued his Lacedaemonians at Tegea, and the very next morning at daybreak advanced upon Mantinea. He led the right wing of the phalanx himself; his mercenaries marched in two parallel columns on each side of his front; and behind Mantinea. He led the right wing of the phalanx himself; his mercenaries marched in two parallel columns on each side of his front; and behind them were carts carrying quantities of field artillery and bolts for the catapults. The road to Tegea. See Paus, 8, 10 sq. Meanwhile Philopoemen too had arranged his army in three divisions, and was leading them out of Mantinea, the Illyrians and the men with body armour by the gate leading to the temple of Poseidon, and with them runs towards the temple of Poseidon, right through the middle of the plain of Mantinea, until it touches the range of mountains that forms the boundary of the territ
Polybius, Histories, book 11, Battle of Mantinea (search)
Battle of Mantinea As soon as the enemy were well in sight, Philopoemen went down the ranks of the phalanx, and addressed to them an exhortation which, though short, clearly pointed out to them the nature of the battle in which they were engaged. But most of what he said was rendered inaudible by the answering shouts of the troops. The affection and confidence of the men rose to such a pitch of enthusiasm and zeal that they seemed to be almost acting under a divine inspiration, as they cried out to him to lead them on and fear nothing. However he tried, when he could get the opportunity, to make this much clear to them, that the battle on the one side was to establish a shameful and ignominious servitude, on the other to vindicate an ever-memorable and glorious liberty. Machanidas at first looked as though he meant to attack theThe attack of Machanidas. enemy's right wing in column; but when he got within moderate distance he deployed into line by the right, and by this extension move
Polybius, Histories, book 11, Machanidas Changes his Plan (search)
Machanidas Changes his Plan Thus it came about that the mercenaries in the army of Machanidas fought with such fury and violence, that even the Illyrians and men with body armour, who formed the reserve supporting the mercenaries of the Achaean army, were unable to withstand their assault; but were all driven from their position, and fled in confusion towards the city of Mantinea, which was about seven stades distant. And now there occurred an undoubted instance of what some doubt, namely, that the issues in war are for the most part decided by the skill or want of skill of the commanders. For though perhaps it is a great thing to be able to follow up a first success properly, it is a greater thing still that, when the first step has proved a failure, a man should retain his presence of mind, keep a good look-out for any error of judgment on the part of the victors, and avail himself of their mistakes. At any rate one often sees the side, which imagines itself to have obtained a clea
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